BUTTE – Butte police along with their SWAT team blocked off a section of the 400 block of Mercury Street for more than three hours on Sunday after a wanted man barricaded himself inside a home.
Officers were first called to the residence early Sunday evening when the landlord wanted two people removed from the multiplex. While there, police learned that Joseph Patrick Mullaney was staying at the residence as well.
“We knew he was wanted on a federal warrant, so he was hiding up in an upper level of the residence in an attic part, where entrance was difficult for us to make, so we didn’t want to risk the lives of our officers up there to make an arrest like that. So we attempted to negotiate with Mr. Mullaney,” said Butte Undersheriff George Skuletich.
At that point, police decided to exercise caution and blocked off the section of Mercury Street between Washington and Jackson streets and then called in their SWAT Team.
“We thought he might be armed, knowing what he was on probation for, knowing what he was arrested for, it was firearm type stuff he was on federal probation for, and basically everybody in Butte’s armed, so we treat them all that way,” said Skuletich.
After the long, tense standoff the wanted man eventually surrendered, but not before law enforcement had to force their way into the attic.
“He was hiding under some insulation. He showed us his hands, we were able to place him under arrest without further incident,” Skuletich said.
Mullaney remains in jail Monday on a federal probation violation.
-John Emeigh reporting for MTN News